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Oct 2018

Cast Your Vote for Dog Parks!

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Dog lovers can make a difference! On October 24 cast your vote for off-leash dog parks!

The results are in. The Winnipeg Network of Dog Owner Groups has just released the results of its “I own a dog AND I vote!” poll of candidates.The survey was conducted between September 15 and 30.

WINDOG President, Donna Henry says the coalition awarded “super dog-friendly” or “dog-friendly” status to fifty percent of the candidates.

WINDOG recognizes four incumbents and a former city counciller as “dog-friendly” for their outstanding commitment to Winnipeg’s off-leash areas. They are Mayor Brian Bowman, North Kildonan Councillor Jeff Browaty, St. Vital Councillor Brian Mayes, Waverly West Councillor Janice Lukes, and former St. Charles Councillor, Grant Nordman.

And twenty-five more have earned ‘dog-friendly’ status, each pledging to improve the city’s limited and underfunded off-leash green space. Dog-friendly candidates will support a Council motion to secure dedicated funding in the City’s capital budget to create new dog parks and upgrade existing ones. ‘Dog-friendlies’ also support designating off-leash areas as ‘single-use’ spaces where only activities associated with off-leash dogs are permitted.

At the back of the pack, five ‘dog-unfriendlies’ are in the dog house. And twenty-five candidates consider off-leash dog parks such a low priority that they didn’t bother responding to the survey.

Henry says there’s much greater awareness and support for off-leash dog parks than there was in the 2014 civic election campaign. She credits extensive public consultation during the development of Winnipeg’s new Off-leash Dog Park Master Plan over the past year for the change in attitudes but says the city still has a long way to go. When it comes to setting aside recreational green space for off-leash dog parks, Winnipeg lags behind every major city in Canada.  

Want to know who the ‘dog-friendlies’ in your ward are or which mayoral candidates will offer the best support to dog parks? Candidate’s responses, their platform and bios are posted on WINDOG’s website.  To check them out, clicking on Election 2018 and follow the links.

At least 40% of Winnipeg households have a dog. That’s an awful lot of votes!

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